What are Music Medals?

Music Medals are teacher-led assessments for younger learners. They build on what's already taught in group lessons and enable students to gain recognition for their hard work.

There are five progressive levels. Copper and Bronze are stepping stones to Grade 1. Silver, Gold and Platinum reward further progress.

The Assessment

There are three components in a Music Medal assessment. Each candidate should play one Ensemble piece, one Solo piece and select one Option test from a choice of four, covering a range of musicianship skills.



Ensemble playing provides valuable experience of the skills of leading, counting-in, interaction, balancing, listening, and blending with others.

What is the aim of the Ensemble component?

Making music together is a distinctive and essential part of Music Medals. Leading the ensemble, counting in, giving appropriate cues, listening, balancing and blending are all vital skills that the Ensemble component of the Medal helps to develop.


Performing as a soloist develops musical independence and individuality, allowing candidates to focus on their own sound as well as their personal expression.

What is the aim of the Solo component?

The candidate plays one piece from the solo repertoire list for their instrument and Medal. This part of the assessment underlines the importance of developing musical independence and individuality.

This Option test is taken entirely by ear.

Candidates who select this Option are required to provide a response on their instrument to each of two separate short phrases of unfamiliar music played by the teacher-assessor.

The key is stated and the starting note of the first phrase named and played by the teacher-assessor, who also counts in two bars before playing the first phrase.

The musical interaction should be continuous, in time and without a break.

Copper & Bronze Levels:

Here, the candidate is required to make up a tune on their instrument using a given rhythm at a set speed.

At Copper and Bronze levels, candidates have the choice of taking the test by ear or at sight from notation. If taken by ear, the rhythm is clapped following a two-bar count-in. This is repeated a second and third time, after which the candidate is given half a minute to prepare before being asked to play their tune.

If taken at sight, candidates are given the notated rhythm, then two bars of the pulse and half a minute of preparation time before being counted in for two bars. Because some teachers use crotchets and quavers first while others use minims and crotchets, the tests at Copper level are written in two versions from which the teacher-assessor chooses.

At Copper and Bronze levels, candidates must use at least three pitches to pass.

Silver, Gold & Platinum Levels:

The candidate is required to make up a tune on their instrument using a given rhythm and in a specified key.

From Silver level, all candidates choosing this test are given the rhythm in notation only. After being given two bars of the pulse, they have half a minute of preparation time before being counted in by the teacher-assessor for two bars.

From Silver level, candidates must use at least five pitches to pass.

Copper Level:

Here, the candidate is required to play two separate one-bar rhythms in 4/4 on their instrument, in time and as an echo.

The teacher-assessor should either clap the rhythms or play them on one note. No preparation time is given.

The answers may be played on a single note or on a series of notes, although there is no additional credit for using more than one note. The teacher-assessor counts in two bars before the first rhythm.

Bronze, Silver, Gold & Platinum Level:

From Bronze level, the candidate is required to play at sight a two-bar passage of unfamiliar music and to improvise a two-bar answering phrase.

After giving two bars of the pulse, the teacher-assessor allows the candidate half a minute of preparation time and then gives a two-bar count-in.

Candidates who select the Sight-reading Option are required to play four bars of unfamiliar music, following half a minute of preparation.

The teacher-assessor advises that the candidate can try out any part or parts of the test for half a minute before playing the whole test.

There are no tempo indications as candidates are encouraged to establish an appropriate tempo for themselves, taking into account the speed at which they can play the music while maintaining a steady pulse and, at the higher levels, the character of the music.